Price paid: $ 300
Purchased from: Guitar Center Rochester, NY
Sound — 6
Suits my style just fine. I'm in an alternative/metal group, and with my FX-86B Death Metal Distortion pedal by DOD (greatest distortion pedal you can buy), it provides great sound. Although the Frontman 15G amp came in the starter set, I'm using a Peavey Rage 158 right now, while using the Fender for my vocals. Once distortion is engaged humming is a problem, but with the sounds of the rest of the group blairing you can't notice. Overall, provides good sound.
Overall Impression — 8
I have been playng for 2 years, mostly on my friends Samick Custom or Ibanez GRX-40. This guitar feels better than both, probably because it is mine and no one elses. If this guitar was stolen, and I had the same amount of bucks to spend, I would, without hesitation, buy another one. I love the fast moving feel of the neck, hate the humming I get at louder volumes, and love the fact that the tuner is soo durable for the price range. If I could change one thing about it...well I'd love to have a humbucker (S-S-H) to add a little more bite, so that is why my next guitar will probable be a Fat Strat. Overall, this axe is an incredible value for the beginner player. Do not hesitate to buy a Squire Affinity Strat...you will not be disappointed.
Reliability & Durability — 8
This guitar has been tested at 3 gigs, each a 1 hour set. The tuner, for this prace range, is incredibly durable. It rarely slides out fo tune on me. Strap buttons are tight and solid...they aren't going to give out any time soon. And seeing as I don't own another guitar, I can't have a back-up...then again, I don't fear this guitar pulling any crap on me.
Action, Fit & Finish — 6
Assembly was fine. I have had this since Christmas with no real problems. I have noticed in other reviews that the washer in the input likes to come loose; this must be a common problem. It is little more than an inconvienence.
Features — 8
This is an awesome beginner axe. A 2002 Indonesian model Strat with 21 frets, classic black and white Strat design (laminated), 3 controls (volume, 2 tone), 5 way switching and 3 single coil pick-ups. It's got a maple body, satin finish and medium frets. Came in a starter pack with a Fender Frontman 15G amp (great practice amp), hot gig bag, tuner, extra strings, strap, and a whole busload of other niceties.